Apache plume won't go to seed

Asked June 13, 2019, 5:25 PM EDT

I have had an apache plume for 4 years. Every year it flowers, but never produces any seed. We live on the Chinle layer near Zion, so do have a good amount of clay in our soil. However, the plant itself seems healthy. Any idea why it won't go to seed?

Washington County Utah

1 Response

Most woody plants do not start flowering and bearing fruit for at least a few years after they start growing from seed. For example, pinyon pines don't bear cones and seeds for about 30 years if they are grown from seeds. This is called reaching sexual maturity. Grafting speeds up the attainment of sexual maturity, since the branch that you are grafting to the seed-grown rootstock is usually mature when it is grafted on. Apache plume (Fallulgia paradoxa) is grown from seed though, so grafting is not an issue. l didn't find evidence of how long it takes for Apache plume to mature, and it would have been mentioned if that was a big deal.

Sometimes plants need stress to induce them into flowering and fruiting, and stress may also induce more heavy flowering and fruiting. I suggest that you water it less or not at all and see what happens.

Good luck.